'A sense of humour lends you poise, it gives you balance and it helps you to bend without breaking'

(HH Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda)

Menoryarnery; Getting My Crojo On

I love to work with yarn, preferably homespun, but modern fibres are fine. I can  - and have - used knitting needles to produce stuff. My choice, though, is crochet. I love it and am moderately good at working the hook. Competent enough to go 'freestyle', but also enjoying a to follow a pattern.

A few months back, Mac2 put a plea to Mac1 and me to see if we could 'rescue' some homespun garments she was clearing from her cupboard but didn't want to go to the thrift stores. They had not been cheap items. Not that the moths respected that...

The items are not my style of thing to wear so couldn't give them a home in my own 'robe... however, my motor mouth volunteered me to rework some of the yarn for her. Completely forgetting the amount of work that is involved in unpicking a garment that has been constructed for a couple of decades. I opted to take the light grey cable-knit you see here, as well as the navy blue. The latter was wool spun by our mother. It will be dealt with in due course. Mac1 took the charcoal and mud-coloured ones - which were a silk blend yarn.

I first tackled the Orkney wool. It is heavy-duty homespun from the seaweed sheep of North Ronaldsay. Not heard of them? Here's a brief rundown...

Aren't they fun? Anyway, first I had to find ways into the garment by which to unravel the thing. It turned out not just to have the odd damage from moths, but to have been quite loosely spun, so rather too easy to break. If you have ever done this job, you will know that the wool was very kinked, having taken on the shape of the individual stitches. As it was getting unravelled, it also had to be made into skeins ready for washing. This was not only necessary for hygiene purposes but to remove as much as possible of the 'stitch memory'. It wasn't a hundred per cent, but it pretty much came up as fresh wool again. After drying, it all had to be rolled into balls ready for the actual project to get going.

All that took the best part of a week to complete. Once I had a good handle on the yarn quantity, discussions were necessary. Another garment would entail something rather less than previous, as crochet can take anything from 30% to 100% more yarn than knitting. It was decided that cushion covers might be the best use of this yarn.

When I had completed one side of the cover, I began to realise that, if I was to produce at least two, if not three covers from this wool, then the reverse of the covers needed another yarn to contrast and ensure there was sufficient to complete the 'faces'. I was very happy with the multi-coloured one I found, which blended nicely. I will take a piccie of the completed items as a whole later. For now, here is a detail from the face with the Orkney wool and one from the new wool. The buttons were a treasure find... from our late mother's stash!

Menorise; Saturday Sayings

"Love is a canvas furnished by nature and embroidered by imagination."